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CCE, Ludhiana Versus M/s. Dirba Pipes Pvt. Ltd, North India Pipes Ltd., Garg Pipes Ltd, M.A. Pipes Ltd, Ashwani Kumar, Megh Raj, Ashok Kumar, Ashok Kumar, Narain Dutt, Raj Kumar, Jagpal Sing, Subhash Chandra, Pankaj Thakkar

2016 (10) TMI 475 - CESTAT, CHANDIGARH

Clandestine manufacture and clearance of excisable goods - investigation - Whether the panchnama drawn during the course of investigation can be relied upon and photocopies of the documents are admissible in the absence of original documents? - Held that: - the photocopies of the documents which are not available in original has been relied on by the revenue is not admissible evidence - the decision of the Apex Court in the case of J.Yashoda vs. Shobha Rani [2007 (4) TMI 11 - SUPREME COURT OF IN .....

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all the units are controlled by one person - decision in the case of M/s. Nova Industries (P) Ltd. Versus CCE- Chandigarh [2015 (5) TMI 99 - CESTAT NEW DELHI] relied uponwhere it was held that all the units are having separate machinery, separate registration number and dealing separately.There is no financial flow back and there is no mutuality of interest between the units. Therefore, all the four units cannot be clubbed together - issue answered in favoe of respondents. - Clandestine remo .....

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inferential or assumed) from the factory without payment of duty; (c) discovery of such finished goods outside the factory; (d) instances of sale of such goods to identified parties; (e) receipt of sale proceeds, whether by cheque or by cash, of such goods by the manufacturers or persons authorized by him; (f) use of electricity far in excess of what is necessary for manufacture of goods otherwise manufactured and validly cleared on payment of duty; (g) statements of buyers with some details of .....

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ied and duty liability is to be determined. No effort has been made to quantify the value and quantity of ERW pipes cleared by each units. Therefore, without ascertaining of value of the goods cleared clandestinely, the demand is not sustainable - issue answered in favor of respondents. - The original documents were not available with revenue. No efforts were made to trace the documents, no official was held liable for the said discrepancy which shows the negligent attitude of the investigat .....

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with the Central Excise department. They are availing SSI exemption benefit under various Notifications as applicable from time to time and had been availing the modvat/cenvat credit facility to discharge their duty liability on their final products. Based on intelligence gathered, DGCEI conducted raid on various factory, office, business, godown and residential preemies of the respondents on 29.11.2001. Furtherance to investigation, the show cause notices were issued to the respondents on acco .....

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Learned AR submits that the Commissioner has fell in error and without considering confessional statements made by the respondents during the course of investigation and over emphasised irregularity in search and seizure procedure and completely ignored hostile atmosphere created by the respondents at the time of search. It is his submission that during the investigation, the police was required to be called and thereafter certain records were resumed. He further submitted that the findings of .....

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anies, arrangement of funds for the same, financial flow back from one company to another, common staff, common office premises and common management are some crucial evidences which have been overlooked by the adjudicating authority. He submits that if the clearances of all four units be clubbed then the benefit of SSI exemption is not available to the respondents. He submits that various plants of the same manufacturer located together are one factory in terms of the definition under section 2 .....

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tions merits to be denied. He submits that the adjudicating authority fell in error while holding pancha should be educated intelligent and should belong to the locality where the searches were carried out. 5. He submits that when the calculation of duty on the basis of clandestine clearance recorded at various ICC has been brushed aside merely on the basis of Sales Tax Assessment orders made by the Sales Tax Authorities. As no data of clearances obtained from the Sales Tax department are clearl .....

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es vis-a-vis financial arrangements, inter-unit transfers of finances, working of the staff under the directions of two persons among the respondents. The arrangement of initial and later investments were made by the two cousins and/or the other family members. Providing of security, by the family members, against the cash credit limits/loans taken from the financial institutions also corroborates the department's allegation of clubbing of clearances. In view of the above submissions, it i p .....

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ly recovered during the search operation. 8. Learned Counsel heavily relied on the impugned order particularly paras 4.10, 4.11, 4.24 and 2.97 of the impugned order which are reproduced as under: 4.10 A number of grave irregularities have been alleged by the noticees in matters relating to search and seizure operation. These have been already mentioned in the reply of the noticees. I consider it relevant to recall only a few: The panch witness in respect of operation carried out at M/s North Ind .....

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ned the papers at the behest of the officers without being able to read or understand the contents. Sh. Mandeep Singh pancha admitted that he studied only upto class IV, does not know English nor can read Punjabi. He was not read out anything before being made to sign various papers, whose contents he had no idea. Nearly same is the case with other pancha Sh. Pawandeep Singh. In the case of DPL one of the panchas is a taxi driver with similar lack of credentials as stated above. The other pancha .....

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clandestine removal has been largely booked. The private diaries marked 17,18 & 68 in the said Annexure are also missing. Page 3 of the Panchnama prepared at the residence of Sh. Meghraj is also missing. The seized papers don't have the signatures of panchas or of any representative of the notice parties or of the seizing officers. Even first and the last pages of all seized records, including the photocopies of the diaries marked 17,18 & 68 on which the case of clandestine removal i .....

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diameters and different lengths, when the number of packets/bundles were 2365 and number of pipes in a bundle varies, besides huge quantity of scrap, both weighing 169.074 Mts in 2640 packets of different weights are stated to have been weighed within 5.30 hrs. Likewise in the case of GPL a quantity of 1, 19,154 kgs. has been shown verified within three hours while the goods were in 31 different sizes of pipes of 3654 bundles having different sizes an weights. In NIPL the quantity verified goes .....

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j was also found lost in sept. 2004. Likewise private diaries marked 17,18 & 68 in Annexure 'A' of panchnama at the premises of NIPL were found missing in Sept., 2004. The existence of these documents is now being established by DGCEI, Ludhiana on the basis that when Sh. Ashok Kumar applied for anticipatory bail, their bails were granted after perusal of the case file by Hon'ble Session judge of Ludhiana. Since only valid and authentic documents could be file in the court of law, .....

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section 36Bof the Central Excise Act. 4.11 As regards the background of the panchas, I am unable to convince myself with the arguments tendered by the Dy. Director DGCEI, Ludhiana. Panchas have to be selected before the operation is begun. Officers have to make themselves available for search so that the possibility of planting anything at the raided premises is ruled out. I can't understand how, even before the operation began, the officers could anticipate any trouble and made no efforts .....

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e taxi drivers and other persons as panchas due to hostilities is a clear admission by the Deputy Director, DGCEI that panchas were engaged much later and not at the start of the operation. They have not at all stated that they started with some other panchas in the beginning but changed them later due to any hostilities. Their statement in their letter dated 28.03.2005 that these panchas had to be engaged due to hostilities at the raided venue-when police had to be called-indicate that searches .....

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the search was conducted in very uncooperative/hostile atmosphere. 4.24 This clearly shows that the show cause notice issuing authority has admitted that all the 4 companies are the manufactures. The above position is further established from the fact that duty form all the 4 manufacturing units in respect of clubbing has been demanded on an independent basis i.e. to the extent of their respective clearance. If the show cause notice issuing authority was of the view that any of the companies had .....

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istration with director of industry as SSI unit, registered with Central Excise Deppt., registered under PGST Act and CST Act, assessed separately under income tax Act, registered with PF and ESI Deptt, having separate power connections, telephone connections, its own labour and work force, its own plant and machinery. All expenses are incurred out of own funds or borrowed funds from PFC and Bank. Similarly, he has submitted the documents showing that MAPL is also having its separate registratio .....

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there is no relationship between directors of M/s GPL/ M/s MAPL and M/s NIPL, M/s DPL. The learned counsel submitted that the search is vitiated because in M/s GPL and M/s MAPL the officers took the record in their custody and left the unit without mentioning in the panchnama that record has been resumed, in M/s NIPL the officers threatened and beaten Sh. Subhash Chander who was taken to hospital Sh. SUbhash Chander during cross examination stated that he was working for M/s GPL and not for M/s .....

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of arrest. The learned counsel explained that the search was conducted in a vexation manner with clear malicious intention of building a false case. He has pointed out that Panchnama in M/s GPL was not signed by any representative of M/s GPL. The factory of M/s NIPL was set up in the year 1997-98 since the numerous officers of Central Excise Deptt has visited the factory and found the record lying there and signed them. Similarly, the factories of M/s GPL, and M/s MAPL were inspected, thus the .....

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EI s application for seeking judicial remand and submitted that DGCEI had admitted that search was not peaceful. Hence the facts mentioned in the panchnama are wrong. He has further pointed out that there were common panches in the M/s GPL and M/s NIPL. Since the time of search was at the same time the panches could not witness the search simultaneously in both the units. He has further contended that searches were conducted without independent and respectable inhabitants of the locality as panc .....

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ELT 458 (SC) 2. Nova Industries Ltd. Vs. CCE, Chandigarh -Final order No.A/50917-50922/2015-EX(DB) dt 18.02.2015 3. Bullows India Pvt.Ltd. Vs. CCE, 2012 (284) ELT 584 (Tribunal) 4. Ennar Cements Pvt. Ltd. Vs. CCE, 2013 (292) ELT 245 (Trib) 5. Geeta Valves & Engineers (P) Ltd, Vs. CCE,1996 (87) ELT 672 (CEGAT) 6. Spring Fresh Drinks Vs. CC, 1991 (54) ELT 333(CEGAT) 7. Santha industrials Vs. CCE,1995 (78) ELT 556 (CEGAT) 8. International Dyestuff Mfg. Co. Vs. CCE,1991 (53) ELT 85 (CEGAT) 9. C .....

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(P) ltd. Vs. CCE, Pune, 2003 (151) ELT 14 (S.C.) 18. Sapthagiri Cements pvt0 Ltd. Vs. CCE, 2005 (183) ELT 385 (Trib Bang) 19. Arya Fibres Pvt. Ltd. Vs. CCE, 2014 (311) ELT 529 (Tri. Ahmd.) 20. Gian Castings Pvt. Ltd Vs. CCE, 2015 (319) ELT 339 (Tri. Delhi) 21. Continental Cement Co. Vs. UOI, 2014 (309) ELT 411 (All.) 22. CCE Vs. Renny Steel Castings P, Ltd., 2013 (288) ELT 45 (P&H) 23. Suntrek Aluminium p. Ltd. Vs. CCE, 2013 (288) ELT 500 (guj) 24. Kuber Tobacco Products Ltd. Vs. CCE, Delhi, .....

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from ICCS of the Punjab Govt. It was alleged in the show cause notice that sales were being effected by the manufacturing units through three trading firm. It is his submission that sales tax assessments of three firms have been finalized for the period of dispute after verifying the data from ICC and no efforts were made by the by the investigating officers to prove veracity of the data obtained. As the sales tax assessments are already finalised, therefore, allegation of clandestine sale of t .....

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ve been recovered during the search. He further submits that the demand of duty is based only on conjectures and surmises. There is no corroborative evidence on record in support of the allegation of clandestine manufacture. To support his contention, he relied on the decision this Tribunal in the case of Arya Fibres Pvt.Ltd.-2014 (311) ELT 529 (Tri.-Ahmd.) and Gian Castings Pvt.Ltd.-2015 (319) ELT 339 (Tri.-Del.), Continental Cement Co.-2014 (309) ELT 411, Renny Steel Castings Pvt.Ltd.-2013 (28 .....

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ts. (ii) Whether the clearances made by the respondents, namely, M/s.Dirba Pipes Pvt. Ltd., M/s,North India Pipes Pvt. Ltd., M/s.M.A. Pipes Pvt. Ltd. and M/s.Garg Pipes Pvt. Ltd. can be clubbed together and the benefit of SSI exemption can be denied. (iii) Whether the demand can be confirmed on the basis of allegation of clandestine manufacture and clearance of excisable goods by the respondents or not. Issue No.1 14. In the Impugned order, the adjudicating authority has found that there are gra .....

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repared. They were the drivers of the taxies, which brought the raiding officers from Ludhiana to Dirba and received-remuneration from the raiding organization and did not belong to the locality where the searches were carried out. They have admitted that, as taxi drivers, they remained seated outside in their respective taxies when the searches were carried out and merely signed the papers at the behest of the officers without being able to read or understand the contents. Sh. Mandeep Singh pan .....

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ad sold karyana" goods. same is the case in respect of nearly all other panchas as already explained in the record of the personal hearing. Moreover, Annexure-'A' of the panchnama is original of M/s NIPL is missing and has not been produced. This Annexure is alleged to contain the details of records (private diaries marked 27,18 & 68) based on which the case of clandestine removal has been largely booked. The private diaries marked 17,18 & 68 in the said Annexure are also mi .....

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fficers. Besides, the physical verification of stocks of raw material and finished goods carried out at different premises is reported to have been completed in all the four entities. The noticees have alleged that it is humanly impossible to verify such huge quantity in such a short period. For example in the case of DPL a huge quantity of 80,874 kg of ERW Pipes of 14 different diameters and different lengths, when the number of packets/bundles were 2365 and number of pipes in a bundle varies, .....

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in a matter of 7 hours. The Dy. Director DGCEI, Ludhiana, in reply to Commissionerate's letter dated 17.03.2005, vide their letter dated 28.03.2005 has pointed out that the loss of Annexure 'A' of the panchnama was noticed in September, 2004 which has been intimated, inter allia, to the police. Page 3 of the panchnama of the search at the residential premises of Sh. Megh raj was also found lost in sept 2004. Likewise private diaries marked 17,18 & 68 in Annexure 'A' of pa .....

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f the panch witness, it has been stated by DGCEI, Ludhiana that the search was conducted in a very un-cooperative/ hostile atmosphere and in these circumstances it was not possible to get the witnesses from the locality and further that the panchnama was explained to the panchas in local language. It has a/so been stated by the officers that photocopies constitute valid evidence under section 36Bof the Central Excise Act. 4.11 As regards the background of the panchas, I am unable to convince mys .....

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elligence, about the possible discovery of incriminating documents. The documents were likely to be in English at least in part if not wholly. Officers of DGCEI are expected to be aware of these aspects and should have taken the basis precautions not to have panchas who could not read or write and were moreover under their own financial remuneration. The justification given to have taxi drivers and other persons as panchas due to hostilities is a clear admission by the Deputy Director, DGCEI tha .....

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their respective taxies outside the raided premises and that corroborates that panchas did not witness the search operations. Further, in panchnama drawn on 29.11.2001 at the manufacturing premises of M/s NIPL, it has been stated that the search was conducted in a peaceful manner whereas in the letter dated 28.03.2005 of Deputy Director DGCEI, Ludhiana it has been mentioned that the search was conducted in very uncooperative/hostile atmosphere. 15. As observed by the adjudicating authority in t .....

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ore, the statement recorded and records seized during the course of investigation have no evidentiary value therefore, these documents cannot be relied upon to allege the allegation of clubbing of clearances of the units on the basis of said records as the panch witnesses are independent persons were not present at the time of search. In the show cause notices, the photocopies of the documents which are not available in original has been relied on by the revenue is not admissible evidence in lig .....

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PL), is a private limited company in which the following persons have been shown on paper, as Directors:- (i) Shri Ashok Kumar S/o Sh.Des Raj, New Grain Market, Dirba Mandi-148035 (ii) Sh. Megh Raj S/o Sh. Hari Ram, New Grain Market, Dirba Mandi-148035 2. M/s.North India Pipes Pvt.Ltd.(M/s.NIPL), is a private limited company in which the following persons have been shown on paper, as Directors: (i) Shri Ashok Kumar S/o Sh.Des Raj, New Grain Market, Dirba Mandi-148035 (ii) Sh. Megh Raj S/o Sh. Ha .....

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e following persons have been shown on paper, as Directors: (i) Sh.Narain Dutt S/o Sh.Manj Ram, Salar Patti, Dirba, Sangrur (ii) Shi. Naresh Kumar S/o Sh.Des Raj, Link Road, Distt.Sangrur. (iii) Sh.Madan Lal S/o of Sh.Atam Ram, VPO Kamalpur, Distti.Sangrur. 15. On the basis of above organisational structure, it has been held that Shri Meghraj and Shri Ashok Kumar have either been shown on paper as directors or have been shown other persons as directors in the aforesaid manufacturing units. It is .....

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here is no common gate for both the companies. Further, both the companies are registered with Income-tax Department, Sales-tax department, Central Excise department, Director of Industries, etc. As separate units. The registration of Central Excise was granted to both the units although the documents were signed by Shri D.V.Khanna for filing returns or correspondence with the department but they were not objected to. 18. Therefore, on organisational structure, it cannot be held that all the uni .....

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separate factories and manufacturing facilities; All the units have purchased the machinery owned by them and also all the raw materials required for manufacturing from their own resources; All the salaries, wages are paid by the all the units from their own sources of finance; All the units have their own Sales Tax and Income Tax Registration; All the units had paid their own electricity Bills; All the units have separate electricity and telephone connections. 19. These facts have not been cont .....

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i Ashok Kumar and Shri Meghraj. We have seen that directors of the two companies have related to the other, it does not mean that they are only one with other companies are dummy as held by in the case of Nova Industries Pvt. Ltd. (supra) wherein this Tribunal has observed as under: 15. First, we will deal with the issue whether the clearance of M/s. DSA can be clubbed with the clearance of M/s, NOVA. In the impugned order, the allegation against the appellant is that both the companies were pro .....

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nits. Moreover, the shareholding in both the units by the Directors is almost common. Sometimes, money was given to each other but nothing was shown in the balance sheet. Therefore, clearance of both the units are to be clubbed as the same are managed by Shri D.V. Khanna, Managing Director in the clearance of NOVA. 16. We also find that in this case, both the units are private limited and registered with the Registrar of Companies and both the units are having their units separately located with .....

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hough both the companies are having different brand names of their product such as NOVA/DSA. The units are having their own separate machinery having manufacturing the goods and same have been cleared on payment of duty by availing SSI exemption of both the units separately. The only allegation is that sometimes, salary of one of the employees was paid by the other firm or they are managed by one person. Moreover, the dealers get the commission on the combined sales of both the companies. These .....

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and subsequently Notification 1/93-C.E., therefore, the ratio of the above decision of the Hon'ble Gujarat High Court is fully applicable on the facts of the present case. The Hon'ble High Court held that the Revenue has to establish that there was mutuality of interest or financial flowback of the funds and in such cases the clearances of the holding and subsidiary private limited companies can be clubbed. In the present case we find that even in the show cause notice there were no such .....

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ted in 2013 (294) E.L.T. 561 (T) this Tribunal again observed as under: We, after appreciating the submissions of both the sides find that there is not much dispute on factual position. It is not the Revenue's case that two units owned by Smt. Kamlesh Gupta and her husband Shri Avdesh Kumar Gupta not complete units having all the necessary machines and infrastructure for manufacture of their final product. Both the units have separate Sales Tax Registration, Industries Registration, Income T .....

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requirement, for clubbing the clearance of two units is not having complete independent machinery and infrastructure to manufacture the goods. If both the units are complete by itself, capable of manufacturing the goods without any help from the other unit, it has to be held that both the units are independent units. The various decisions of the Tribunal referred to and relied upon by Commissioner (Appeals) in his impugned order are applicable to the facts of the present case. It stands held in .....

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) E.L.T. 299 (Tri.) it was held evidence of common office premises, common staff and common maintenance of records, etc. cannot be held to be sufficient to club the clearances of the units, who have different registration in all the departments and in the absence of any financial flow back. 19. We further, analyse the decision of Ennar Cements Pvt. Ltd v. CCE reported in 2013 (292) E.L.T. 245 (T) (supra) wherein this Tribunal has observed as under : "We have gone through the records of the .....

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ollectively from both the units. If the Department feels that out of the two units, one unit is dummy, then the dummy unit should have been identified. In that case, the value of the clearance of dummy unit could have been clubbed with the clearance of the real unit and duty demanded. This has not been done. The learned Commissioner in the impugned order has given the following findings: - "70 (ii) Whether each unit is entitled to a separate limit (under the SSI exemption notification) as p .....

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is a manufacturer by itself and would be entitled to a separate exemption limit. It is not in dispute that M/s. Ennar Cements and M/s. Seshashaila Cements are private limited companies registered separately under the Companies Act and each of them have separate factories. Taking various facts into account I have already held in my findings on (i) above that the management [of both the units] is one and the same and both the units are not independent to each other, thereby they are to be treated .....

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and correct and it is contrary to the Board's Circular," 20. We further find that in the case of Alpha Toyo Ltd. v. CCE, New Delhi reported in 1994 (71) E.L.T. 689 (Tribunal) this Tribunal has observed as under : SSI exemption - Clubbing of clearances common Managerial Control, a few common directors and advancing of interest free loans by main unit to other units not sufficient to make other units as dummies when they are having independent control or money flow back to the main unit .....

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connection - One unit owned by father-in-law and the other by daughter-in-law and work of both units looked after by her husband - In absence of evidence of common finding and financial flow back, two units not treatable as one and their clearances not clubbable Notification No. 175/86-C.E.dated 1-3-1986. 22. In the case of Vivomed Labs. (P) Ltd v, Collector of C.Ex. reported in 1991 (53) E.L.T. 152 (Tribunal) Exemption to SSI Units - Clubbing of clearances - Units registered separately under In .....

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/83, dated 1-3-1983, No. 85/85, dated 17-3-1985 and No. 175/86, dated 1-3-1986. 23. We also find that the activity of the appellants were in the knowledge of the department as they were registered with the Central Excise Department and units are located in the same range, therefore, extended period of limitation is also not invokable for clubbing the clearance of DSA with NOVA. 24. From the analysis of the above decisions and the facts of the case before us, we find that both the units are separ .....

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emicals Ltd. In the said case, the facts were as under: Respondent no. 1 - M/s. Modi Alkalies & Chemicals Ltd. (in short MACL') is engaged in the manufacture of caustic soda of which Hydrogen gas is a by-product. The Central Excise Authorities noticed that in reality MACL was engaged in the manufacture of Hydrogen gas falling under sub-heading 2804.90 of the schedule of the Central Excise Tariff Act, 1985 (in short 'Tariff Act'), But with a view to evade payment of excise duty it .....

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ject was to avail benefit of exemption given to small scale industries under the Central Excise Notification No. 1/93, dated 28-2-1993 and thereby evade payment of central excise duty. With a view to unravel the truth Director General of Anti-Evasion (for short 'DGAE') searched the factory and office premises of MACL and the three front companies on 27-9-1996. It was found that all the three bottling units were located in one single shed and were separated from each other by small brick .....

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companies. Marketing of the products was done by one Ritesh Beotra, a so-called Director of SCGCPL who was working as Deputy Manager (Marketing) in M/s. Modi Gas & Chemicals Sales Depot at Delhi. He was marketing various gases manufactured by a Modi group concern and was answerable as an employee of MACL. It was, therefore, concluded that MACL had control over Hydrogen gas even after the stage of bottling till it was sold to the customers. The Balance-sheets and other financial statements of .....

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anies @ ₹ 5/- per unit. Keeping in view all these factors the authorities were of the view that MACL had created the three companies with the fraudulent intention to avail benefit of exemption granted under Central Excise Notification No. 1/93, dated 28-2-1993 and has mis-declared the assessable value in the invoices with the intention to evade central excise duty. 21. On these set of facts, the Apex Court came to the conclusion that the benefit of exemption notification is not available a .....

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emanshu Auto Ltd. The driver, however, did not produce any Central Excise gate pass. In his statement, the Excise clerk of Heemanshu Traders deposed that as per oral instruction of Shri Girisbhai Shah, he prepared a challan for dispatch of 12.285 Kgs. of M.S. Scrap from M/s. Heemanshu Traders in the name of M/s. Heemanshu Auto Ltd. Scrutiny of records of Heemanshu Traders revealed that duty determined under Gate Passes for the period from 4th April, 1988 to 7th April, 1988 had not been debited. .....

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. The Department was of the view that Heemanshu Traders had by recourse to fraud, wilful mis-statement and suppression of facts evaded payment of duty in respect of 12285 Kgs. of M.S. Scrap seized from the Truck, did not account for the day to day production of M.S. Scrap in R.G. 1 register, cleared 12323 Electric Horns during the period from 4-4-88 to 7-4-88 without debiting the duty in PLA/RG 23A and that all the units above mentioned along with Shri Vishnu Industries, M.C. Industries and D.G. .....

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No. 83/83, dated 1-3-83 and 85/85, dated 17-3-85) and, therefore, were not entitled to exemption as SSI unit The duty of ₹ 24,31,502 was demanded under show cause notice dated 4-10-1988 for the period from 1985 to 1987-88 besides proposing confiscation of goods under seizure, truck and land, plant, buildings and imposition of penalty under Rule 173Q (1) of the Central Excise Rules. Thereafter this Tribunal has held that exemption is not available. 23. We have seen that the decisions in bot .....

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o take note of the fact there is no financial flow back and there is no mutuality of interest between the units. Therefore, all the four units cannot be clubbed together and the same has been confirmed by the adjudicating authority in the impugned order giving detailed findings on the issue. In the circumstances, we hold that the all the units cannot be clubbed together and the respondents are entitled to the benefit of SSI exemption from time to time. Therefore, this issue is answered in favour .....

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stine sale of the finished goods, therefore, through these trading firms as no sales took place as per sales tax assessment and there is no corroborative evidence to allege that clandestine removal of the goods by the respondents, moreover, the demand on clandestine clearance is made on assumption and presumption. No calculation has been given and the demand was sought to be distributed in all four respondents manufacturers equally which is against the judicial discipline. Further, as no corrobo .....

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established by Revenue which mainly are the following : (i) There should be tangible evidence of clandestine manufacture and clearance and not merely inferences or unwarranted assumptions; (ii) Evidence in support thereof should be of : (a) raw materials, in excess of that contained as per the statutory records; (b) instances of actual removal of unaccounted finished goods (not inferential or assumed) from the factory without payment of duty; (c) discovery of such finished goods outside the fac .....

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